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BELMAR MAYOR KICKS OFF 'SPRING CLEANING' FOR EARTH DAY

Belmar Station adopted; three other stations set for spruce up

April 20,2006
NJT-06-052
Contact: Dan Stessel 973-491-7078

BELMAR, NJ - In celebration of Earth Day, Belmar Mayor and NJ TRANSIT Board member Kenneth E. Pringle today announced the 'adoption' of the train station here under NJ TRANSIT's Adopt-A-Station program, which also signaled the startup of the Corporation's 'Spring Cleaning Station Sweep' program.

Sovereign Bank's Belmar Branch agreed to adopt the train station for two years and will pick up litter around the facility at least four times a year. Representatives from the bank also will plant and maintain flowers on the property.

In addition, NJ TRANSIT has partnered with the New Jersey Clean Communities Council, which will spruce up rail stations in New Brunswick, Elizabeth and Atlantic City next week. The Trenton-based nonprofit organization will deploy members to sweep and pick up litter.

"With the summer almost upon us, today's 'Station Sweep' will allow us to gear up for the season and put our best face forward," Pringle said. "And with Sovereign Bank as our new partner in caring for the adopted Belmar Station, we'll be able to keep it that way."

"Because we are in such close proximity to the station, many Sovereign customers ride the train," said Lynda Clarkson, Sovereign Bank's vice president and senior community banking manager in Belmar. "We are happy to help enhance and brighten the train station, which ultimately helps make Belmar a great place to live, work and conduct business."

"The New Jersey Clean Communities Council is proud to partner with NJ TRANSIT as part of its spring cleaning," said Sandra Huber, executive director of the New Jersey Clean Communities Council, which oversees litter abatement programs in 559 eligible municipalities in 21 counties. "It is our goal to enhance community pride and change the attitude that causes littering."

During today's program Mayor Pringle, volunteers from the New Jersey Clean Communities Council and Sovereign Bank planted flower pots, swept around the station, picked up litter and power-washed the sidewalk.

NJ TRANSIT introduced its 'Adopt-A-Station' program in 1998, modeling it after the New Jersey Department of Transportation's successful 'Adopt-A-Highway' program. Belmar Station is the 19th station to be adopted.

In addition to the Adopt-A-Station program, NJ TRANSIT works diligently to protect the environment throughout the year:

Particulate matter reduced dramatically

Since 1991, NJ TRANSIT has employed a comprehensive strategy to dramatically reduce emissions from its bus fleet by:

Purchasing new equipment (MCI Cruisers, Neoplan and Nova B buses)

Rebuilding engines in older buses

Using ultra-low-sulfur diesel fuel

Adding alternative-energy buses (compressed natural gas and hybrids)

NJ TRANSIT is on course to reduce particulate-matter emissions by more than 91 percent over 1994 levels, and to reduce oxides of nitrogen emissions (two major pollutants from exhaust) by 53 percent, by the end of 2006.


Heavy user of 'green power'

Recently, NJ TRANSIT's use of renewable energy was recognized when the United States Environmental Protection Agency named the New Jersey Consolidated Energy Savings Program (NJCESP) the nation's 14th largest purchaser of 'green power' (electricity from solar, wind and geothermal sources). NJ TRANSIT uses 30 percent of the green power purchased by the NJCESP. Since joining the program in 2000, the net effect of

NJ TRANSIT participation has resulted in clean air benefits equivalent to the removal of almost 10,000 cars from the road. NJ TRANSIT has also reduced its electrical consumption through a series of lighting and building automation control projects, reducing air pollution. In addition to the dollars saved, the net effect of this program is equivalent to the removal of an additional 5,000 cars from the road each year.

Hybrid vehicles replace older vehicles

NJ TRANSIT recently replaced some of its older fleet vehicles with 21 hybrid vehicles, which are powered through a combination of gasoline and electricity. The new hybrids are environmentally friendly and cost less to fuel.

Recycling paper, industrial waste serves environment

NJ TRANSIT uses recycled paper for its timetables and copy machines to benefit the environment. Each year, the Corporation's recycling program saves 1.2 million gallons of water, nearly 3,000 trees and 1.6 billion BTUs of energy, while reducing atmospheric emissions, waterborne waste and solid waste.

In general, the Corporation recycles about 20 tons of paper per month at its larger office facilities.

In addition, NJ TRANSIT has implemented recycling programs for industrial waste. Last year, for example, the Corporation recycled approximately 212,000 gallons of used oil, 38,000 gallons of used anti-freeze, 13 tons of mercury-containing fluorescent and metal halide light bulbs, 153,000 pounds of used oil and fuel filters, and 25 tons of batteries.


OzonePass program gives environment, customers some relief

The Corporation's OzonePass program gives New Jersey-based employers the opportunity to offer their employees a $2.50-round-trip commute within New Jersey on any NJ TRANSIT bus, train or light rail line on designated 'Ozone Alert' days. NJ TRANSIT was the first commuter system to introduce the OzonePass concept in 1999. Since the program's inception, NJ TRANSIT has sold more than 50,000 OzonePasses to New Jersey employers. For more information about the program, organizations can contact NJ TRANSIT at (973) 491-7600.

About NJ TRANSIT

NJ TRANSIT is the nation's largest statewide public transportation system providing more than 827,000 weekday trips on 240 bus routes, three light rail lines and 11 commuter rail lines. It is the third largest transit system in the country with 162 rail stations, 55 light rail stations and more than 17,000 bus stops linking major points in New Jersey, New York and Philadelphia.